South African guitarist Derek Gripper’s most multidimensional set of solo guitar works in the form of a snapshot of a year of personal transformation, framed by the ritual of cold water swimming. The influence of Mali is felt via re-workings of compositions by Salif Keita and Baaba Maal but Gripper also channels the Xhosa uhadi (musical bow) and the mbira (thumb piano) of Zimbabwe as part of a trio of dedications to influential African women performers. The album is fleshed out by his own singular compositional style that marries avant garde guitar primitivism with classical grace and precision. Raw yet ornate, intense yet elegant, Gripper's sound is a force of nature. Limited to 300 copies worldwide.
A YEAR OF SWIMMING | DEREK GRIPPER | 2020 | SOUTH AFRICA